What happens next?
Author and Illustrator Tull Suwannakit
Educational Review and Activities by Jenny Graham (abcJenny)
Love it, love it, love it.
I’m not sure whether I love the illustrations more or the text. What a talented person Tull Suwannakit must be to provide such amazing illustrations and delightful text. I can imagine the author as a story teller to children of all ages.
Not only is the book fun to read but there are also many educational opportunities when reading this book to your own child or children in a child care, pre-school or school setting.
My recommendation would be for parents/teachers to read this book to children from three onwards.
My top 4 educational activities would be:-
Imaginative versus Informative
The Australian National Curriculum from Foundation Level onwards in both reading and writing discuss the need for students to understand the difference between imaginative and informative texts. What happens next, would be a great text to use as it begins in an innocent way of Little Ellie asking her Granny to tell her a story. A real event in many children’s lives. However, once the story begins about bears and Little Ellie states, “Don’t bears eat berries and sleep all day?” the text turns from any hope of being informative to a delightful imaginative text.
With children/students you could use this book as a start to imaginative texts, highlighting the facts in the story and the use of imagination in the story.
Children can orally retell or write a sentence which is factual about an animal and then an imaginative sentence.
Walker Publishers and the team who created the layout have designed the book to promote shared reading.
When you are reading the book to children, point to the words, ‘What happens next?’ in the book, if you feel comfortable use a different voice also.
This will help a child to notice the increased font size and placement of the text, “What happens next?’
Once you have read the book once or even through the first reading of the book, What happens next? when your point to the words “what happens next” your child may begin to predict these words and say them aloud as part of the shared reading experience.
What happens next, is a great introduction to the concept of prediction. Children can model Little Ellie by not only asking the reader, ‘What happens next?’ but predicting what they think will happen on the next page of the book. The beauty of this book is, there is no wrong answer, the author has created such imaginative scenarios that it is unlikely anyone could predict the next page.
Prediction is a decoding tool and a reading comprehension tool.
Retelling a story is a necessary part of learning to read. Pre-readers gain confidence and a love of books once they begin retelling. Children don’t need to read word for word they can tell the story in their own words by the use of memory and illustrations.
What happens next is a prefect retell book for pre-readers. The plot is simple to remember and the illustrations provide good prompts for children.
The language the author uses is familiar to the child, with any unfamiliar words illustrated.
Charlie and Tommy’s review.
Charlie (aged 7)
“What happens next?” Charlie asked when I finished reading the book.
“You tell me,” I reply.
“She wakes up and it’s Little Ellie’s turn again and this time with a bee. Actually, the little bee says what happens next.”
Tommy (aged 5)
Every page I turned Tommy laughed and pointed to the funny things the bears were doing. He liked the peek-a-boo page the best.
“What happens next, Tommy?” I asked.
Tommy replied, “They all go off on an adventure, Granny sees wild animals and fights them with her bag, all the bears run and hide. The little girl helps Granny fight them with a stick.”
Tommy gives it a big smiley face also.
For more Picture Book and Children’s Chapter Book Educational Reviews and Activities
Authors contact abcJennyG@hotmail.com for an Educational Review on your published Children’s Book or activities based on your book, which can be linked to the National Curriculum at a cost.
To purchase a copy of What happens next? by Tull Suwannakit.